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Aire River Escape 2710 Great Ocean Rd Hordern ValeSorry! Aire River is closing for winter maintenance. Bookings available late September 2021 onwards. Aire River Escape is an experience like nothing else. Tucked away, just off the Great Ocean Road is a private cabin, designed and built for couples seeking indulgence and seclusion. Nestled on a bend of the pristine Aire River the cabin overlooks rich farmland and the Otway National Park, the location is stunning. Aire River is a destination in itself, you don’t need to go anywhere else.
Sky Pod 1 - Luxury Off-Grid Eco AccommodationRelax in luxury, architecturally designed, self-contained Sky Pods, situated on a 200-acre, private wildlife refuge property on the rugged coast of Cape Otway. This picturesque getaway features sweeping views of the Southern Ocean, as well as the surrounding coastal rainforest, with the Great Ocean Walk, Station Beach and Rainbow Falls all within walking distance. Sky Pods are private, spacious, cosy, and fully equipped with all modern conveniences for your comfort. Strictly 2 Adults (no children or infants)
Sky Pod 2 - Luxury Off-Grid Eco AccomodationRelax in luxury, architecturally designed, self-contained Sky Pods, situated on a 200-acre, private wildlife refuge property on the rugged coast of Cape Otway. This picturesque getaway features sweeping views of the Southern Ocean, as well as the surrounding coastal rainforest, with the Great Ocean Walk, Station Beach and Rainbow Falls all within walking distance. Sky Pods are private, spacious, cosy, and fully equipped with all modern conveniences for your comfort.
Driving the Great Ocean Road, along which the town of Cape Otway sits, is a rite of passage for any visitor to Victoria. The legendary coastal touring drive takes you through pretty seaside towns, weaving through native forest with large numbers of koalas, passing beaches where surfers tackle the crashing waves of the Southern Ocean, and leading to natural attractions normally immortalised on postcards — such as the 12 Apostles (of which there are now only eight), Gibson Steps, and Loch Ard Gorge. The road stretches 243 kilometres (150 miles) along Victoria’s southern coast from Torquay to Allansford: almost halfway between the two towns you’ll find Cape Otway, at the southern tip of this shoreline and surrounded by Great Otway National Park.
Here, rainforests and streams tumble toward rocky cliffs that jut into the ocean, revealing hidden sandy beaches and dramatic windswept seascapes. These are the kind of humbling landscapes that make you feel completely insignificant, in the best possible way. Small wonder the full Great Ocean Road is on the Australian National Heritage List for its significance to the nation.
The route from Melbourne Tullamarine Airport (MEL) to Cape Otway traverses a large section of the Great Ocean Road and is best explored at your own pace. Having your own transportation is ideal, giving you the freedom to linger in seaside towns or beside beaches, then drive to explore hinterland rainforest. Alternatively, trains operate from Melbourne to Colac and Geelong, with bus connections available, although infrequent. The closest airport to the start of the Great Ocean Road is Avalon (AVV), outside Geelong, with flights landing here from Sydney, Adelaide, and the Gold Coast; car hire is available on site.
The summer months are peak season along the Great Ocean Road, for good reason — surfing, swimming, snorkelling, and beach-hopping are all on the agenda at this time of year. But the influx of visitors can mean otherwise sleepy towns and beaches become crowded. Winter offers an escape from the heat, humidity, and traffic, and is also prime time for spotting migrating whales (May through November). Spring and autumn appeal to hikers — the former season is particularly pretty, with wildflowers in bloom, wildlife in abundance, and waterfalls at their peak. Spring also sees festivals out in full force, from the Port Fairy Spring Music Fest to the Lorne Festival of Performing Arts.
Mainland Australia’s enormous coastline hosts a plethora of lighthouses, of which the oldest surviving example is the one crowning Cape Otway. Built in 1848 and standing 90 metres (295 feet) above Bass Strait, the lightstation was often the first sight of land for migrants sailing to Australia from Europe, Asia, and North America. Tour the grounds, climb the tower, and chat to guides about how the lighthouse saved hundreds of lives at sea and became known as the Beacon of Hope.
Whether you’re cycling, kayaking, surfing, or flying through the treetops on a zipline, this immense swathe of national parkland offers adventures at every turn. Alternatively, lace up your hiking boots for the Great Ocean Walk, spanning eight days, between Apollo Bay and the Twelve Apostles — it can also be tackled in more manageable sections.
Uniting artisan producers, growers, and makers throughout the Otway Ranges, the Harvest Trail is like having the region in a tasty mouthful. Go your own way, or follow one of the six suggested itineraries, whether it’s to sample berries and wine, gin and cheese, or beer and pizza — with plenty of epic attractions listed along whichever route you choose.